DAILY NEWS Jan 5, 2022 7:48 AM - 0 comments

Harold Greenberg Fund Supports 29 Script Development Projects

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Astral's Harold Greenberg Fund's English-Language Program Fund is pleased to announce its latest round of funding for 29 new and ongoing projects through its Script Development Program. Chosen from 133 applications, the most recent selection includes new projects from some of Canada's most illustrious filmmakers including Vincenzo Natali's Nobody and Sarah Polley's adaptation of Alias Grace and Paris, to be directed by Paul Haggis. Nobody is Vincenzo Natali's adaptation of Shundo Ohkawa's Japanese film of the same name. It is a high concept thriller being produced by Copperheart Entertainment. Alias Grace, the Giller prize-winning novel by Margaret Atwood, is being adapted by Sarah Polley. The novel is based on a true story about a notorious Canadian 19th century murder. Paris is Academy Award-winning director Paul Haggis' politically motivated drama, written by Dawn Kuisma.Fellow Oscar-winning producer Bobby Moresco is also attached to the project, along with Christine Tyson.

Highly anticipated projects from second feature filmmakers include Peter Stebbings' Empire of Dirt and The Lion's Share from Nathan Morlando and Allison Black. As a follow up to his directorial debut in Defendor, Peter Stebbings latest project is Empire of Dirt. This First Nations story about families rebuilding is being written by Shannon Masters, and produced by Jennifer Podemski. Edwin Boyd creators Nathan Morlando and Allison Black are back after having recently won Best First Canadian Feature at the Toronto International Film Festival®. Their latest project, The Lion's Share is the story of two men from opposite sides of the world and the law fighting for their families in the face of economic disaster. 

Making a screenwriting debut is Giller prize-winning novelist Joseph Boyden with the adaptation of Red. It is based on a graphic novel by Michael Nicoll Yahgulanaas that fuses Aboriginal tales and Japanese-style comic art. While this is Joseph Boyden's first screenplay, he is a best-selling, critically acclaimed novelist known for stories such as Three Day Road and Through Black Spruce.

The Trailer Park Boys are back with the mockumetary Race Dicks. Stars Robb Wells, John Paul Tremblay and Mike Smith play themselves as they compete with drivers from around the world in the Newfoundland Targa. While this crew differs from the boys we've come to know from the long running, hit TV series, their typical misadventures ensue. 

We're also proud to announce our continuing support of many ongoing projects, including The Outlander and Sailor Girl. Both The Outlander and Sailor Girl have been supported in the second to final draft stage.

"This was a very competitive round of development, with a number of exceptional projects from some of the greatest filmmakers in Canada," said John Galway, President of Astral's Harold Greenberg Fund's English-Language Program. "Despite that, we were able to support a wide range of projects that accurately represents the diversified portfolio we pride ourselves on."

Projects approved this quarter include:


Story Optioning

Alias Grace Tangled Inc. Sarah Polley

The Cellist of Sarajevo Strident Films Inc. TBD

Far to Go House of Films Inc. Hannah Moscovitz & Rosa Laborde

Ty Conn Four Seasons Productions Inc. Marcus Robinson


Treatment to First Draft

Heartbeat Bad Astronaut Inc. Andrea Dorfman

Mulan Gen One Films Inc. Deborah Chow

Red Mamaoo Pictures Ltd. Joseph Boyden

Race Dicks The Pits Inc. Robb Wells, Mike Smith & J.P. Tremblay

Southpaw Mutual Street Productions Jesse Moss & John Reardon

First to Second Draft

All That Matters Triptych Media Inc. Paulo Barzman

Bottle Rocket Hearts Me Three Productions Inc. Zoe Whittall & Linsey Stewart

A Death in the Bullfighting Hills New Real Films Inc. Martyn Burke

Flop House John Hazlett & Darren Curtis Darren Curtis & John Hazlett

The Harder They Come Conquering Lion Pictures Inc. Clement Virgo & Douglas Century

Idiot Wind Corey Marr Productions Inc. Joseph Kay

Nobody Copperheart Entertainment Vincenzo Natali

Sitting on the Edge of Marlene Rodeo Queen Pictures Inc. Ana Valine

Torchbearer Circle Blue Films David Bradley Halls

What You Need Picture Plant Ltd. Sherry White


Second to Final Draft

Beneath Planet Cronenberg Viddywell Films Inc. Chris Trebilcock

Don't Talk to Irene Alyson Richards Productions Inc. Pat Mills Empire of Dirt Red Cloud Studios Shannon Masters

Esc Suki Films Inc. Robert Higden

The Fifty Raven West Films Jim Kouf

Glitch Karma Film Inc. & Divani Films Srinivas Krishna & Peter Lauterman

The Outlander Strada Films Inc. & Triptych Media Inc. Esta Spalding

Paris Diamonds to Bullets Entertainment Dawn Kuisma

Sailor Girl Markham Street Films Inc. Johanna Schneller

Polish & Packaging

The Lion's Share Euclid 431 Pictures Inc. Nathan Morlando & Allison Black

The Script Development Program was created to assist in the development of quality Canadian feature film scripts. The program receives a yearly contribution of $1.3 million from Astral's The Movie Network. The script development applications are reviewed each quarter by the English-Language Committee of Astral's Harold Greenberg Fund, which includes Suzette Couture, Damon D'Oliveira, Melanie Friesen, John Galway, Bryn Matthews, Jane Tattersall and Kevin Wright.

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